Chasing 118 at the Abu Dhabi Cricket Ovals, Short hit 68 from 53 deliveries including eight fours as the Australians reached their target of 118 in the 16th over. Medium-pacer Amir Hayat was the pick of the bowlers for the hosts after finishing with 2-26.
Earlier, the UAE recovered from a poor start, going from 17-3 to post 117-6 with Shaiman Anwar top-scoring with 41. Pacers Billy Stanlake and Nathan Coulter-Nile were the standout bowlers with identical figures of 2-20 from their four overs apeice.
Here are the talking points from the first official T20 between both sides:
Stanlake and Coulter-Nile return
Stanlake and Coulter-Nile will be hoping their two-wicket hauls help them press their case for selection for next year’s World Cup. On a wicket that usually suits the spinners, the pacers were effective as they troubled the UAE batsmen from the very first ball.
The 23-year-old Stanlake has been playing non-stop cricket for the past four months and that helped him hit the right lines immediately. Since the start of the year, the Queensland native has been on fire with Monday’s efforts taking him to 18 wickets in 13 T20Is.
Coulter-Nile was back in national colours for the first time in almost a year following back injury. He found his rhythm in the domestic circuit, taking 10 wickets in five matches. More performances like these, beginning against Pakistan from Wednesday and it will be hard for selectors to ignore them.
Australia win by seven wickets!— ICC (@ICC) October 22, 2018
UAE made them work hard, at one point reducing them to 31/2, but D'Arcy Short's 68* saw them home with 23 balls to spare.#UAEvAUS SCORE ⬇https://t.co/UJAs4vMiW3 pic.twitter.com/d19wsh5LR7
Solid T20I debut for UAE’s Hayat
It’s not even been a full year since Amir Hayat made his UAE debut and he seems to be getting better every game. He was the standout bowler for the hosts with figures of 2-26, not bad for someone who was playing his first T20 International. Hayat, who took 24 wickets in 25 matches prior to the game, made a fine start by not allowing captain Aaron Finch to settle at the crease – having him caught for one – and took another big wicket when he removed T20 specialist Chris Lynn for 20. It might have come in a losing cause but Hayat won’t forget the day he dismissed two high-profile cricketers in the UAE capital in his first T20 International.
UAE need more fixtures against Test nations
While elite nations regularly tour the UAE either on a stop-over to the subcontinent or to face Pakistan, Dougie Brown’s side have not had many opportunities of testing themselves against top teams. West Indies and England are among two they have faced on home turf in the last three years but those were unofficial games. Monday’s game against Australians would have been the same had the ICC not granted the fixture international status. Although it was a one-sided affair, the experience the UAE players take from the match will be crucial as it’s not every day they get to rub shoulders with the world’s best. It is imperative that this isn’t a one-off.